Category Archives: USA

Din Tai Fung 鼎泰豐 – Seattle

I haven’t been down to Bellevue since Din Tai Fung opened a few years ago.  As a die-hard DTF fan,  this is totally unacceptable so I finally made the 3 hr trip down to Bellevue!

I encountered a bit of a culture-shock at this American outlet.  Instead of the minimalist decor of the Asian branches, this branch has a bar, with ESPN showing on the plasma tvs.  The servers wore black outfits (mini skirts too!) instead of the traditional Chinese outfits in white.  Not being racist but just observant, the majority of the servers and chefs (who wrap the xiaolongbao) are Hispanic.  When I was ordering, I started saying xiaolongbao.. but then realized that my waiter didn’t understand Mandarin and had to think for a split second what xiaolongbao is in English!

IMG_7690we ordered the normal xiaolongbao and the crab roe one

Compared to the xiaolongbao in Asia, the ones here had the same thin dumpling skin, same amount of soup but the meat didn’t taste as good.  Also, for some reason, my chopsticks kept on sticking to the dumpling skin.

IMG_7695as you can see.. the crab roe xiao long bao was extremely dry and only a dash of roe…

IMG_7694The pork chop noodles were disappointing… the pork chop wasn’t  fried to golden perfection and it wasn’t served separately…

IMG_7699the fried rice tasted like in Asia!

IMG_7698the dan dan noodles tasted like in Asia!

IMG_7702I’ve never seen sesame dumplings on the menu at DTF, only sesame bun.  There was a lot of sesame filling, but unfortunately, this was tooooooooo sweet and the dumpling skin was dried up.

The quality of this DTF branch isn’t up to par to the Asian branches but when compared to other Shanghainese restaurants I’ve tried in America, DTF Bellevue is probably the best.  Pricewise, it’s the same as in Asia.

FAIM? oui oui??

Din Tai Fung 鼎泰豐

700 Bellevue Way Northeast  Bellevue, WA 98004, United States
+1 425-698-1095

Portage Bay Cafe – Seattle, USA

Went down to Seattle to meet up with my BFF before summer ended…she’s studying at UW and took us to lunch at Portage Bay.

Portage Bay is a campus favourite and only serves breakfast, brunch and lunch.

Loved the airy and sunny interior… it also has outdoor seating..

Organic Pancakes (Two big pancakes made from Bluebird Farms heirloom wheat, organic yogurt, brown sugar and vanilla)… There’s a toppings bar with whipped cream, butter, syrup, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, nuts and more! And! it’s unlimited toppings and you can go back as many times as you want!  My BFF said my piling of the toppings was pathetic cause most people cover the entire plate with toppings.  I didn’t want to seem like a pig …. I ended up making more that 7 runs to the toppings bar because I kept getting the blueberries which tasted so sweet and fresh.

Barbecue Pork Sandwich (All-Natural pork shoulder, braised in our spicy homemade Fonte espresso barbecue sauce, piled up on a soft brioche bun with a heap of fresh slaw)…. Mom ordered this and loved it.. especially the sauce..

Club all-natural (organic chicken, with organic avocado mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, and thick pepper bacon, all on our savory country white bread)

Thai Style Manila Steamer Clams (sustainably harvested local manila clams sautéed with organic shallots, garlic, Thai purple basil, organic mini bell peppers, diced organic roma tomatoes, and Alvarez Farms organic purple spring onions in a red chili infused coconut broth finished with organic chopped scallions)….  BFF ordered this… I had a few clams.. really fresh but the sauce was spicy…..

BFF’s been waiting forever for this post to be up!  Thanks for the great brunch recommendation!


Portage Bay Cafe

4130 Roosevelt Way Northeast
Seattle, WA
(206) 547-8230

The Cheesecake Factory – Seattle

After spending more time walking around downtown Seattle and visiting the architecturally stunning  – Rem Koolhaas designed Seattle Central Library, we went for a very early dinner at the Cheesecake Factory!

we decided to not order any mains (only appetizers) so that we could each order a piece of cheesecake!

i forgot what salad we ordered, but I didn’t like it except for the beans……

Factory Nachos (Crisp Tortilla Chips Covered with Melted Cheeses, Guacamole, Sour Cream and Salsa with Spicy Chicken)… I’m not a big Salsa or Cheese fan, so I stuck with my tortilla chips (without melted cheese) and guacamole which was soooooooo good!

we ordered 5 cheesecake to share!!

The Original Cheesecake (with a Graham Cracker Crust and Sour Cream Topping)…. yumm.. so creamy and thick! I think the original’s the best!

Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake (Layers of Flourless Godiva Chocolate Cake, Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake and Chocolate Mousse).. so rich!

Ultimate Red Velvet Cheesecake (Moist layers of Red Velvet Cake and our Original Cheesecake covered with our special Cheesecake Factory cream cheese frosting).. i didn’t like the red velvet too much because it was overly sweet..

Brownie Sundae Cheesecake (Walnut-Brownie Cheesecake and White Chocolate Mousse Covered with Hot Fudge and Almonds)…. calories overload! but it was really good…. my 2 favourite things together… brownie and cheesecake!

Wild Blueberry White Chocolate Cheesecake (Original Cheesecake Swirled with Wild Blueberries. Topped with White Chocolate Mousse)….aww.. my friends celebrated my birthday even though it was the day before.. so sweet of them!  i thought that this cheesecake was toooo sweet because of the white chocolate…

Did you know.. the original cheesecake has the least amount of calories? around 600 calories! and the other cheesecakes have 1000+ calories! 1 cheesecake is almost equal to the suggested caloric intake!

We thought we were smart by only ordering appetizer but we were wrong!!  We could hardly finish our cheesecake and tried to force-feed ourselves.. but we still could finish! I felt so sick (and fat) from the cheesecake, I became “cake-phobic” for 2 weeks!


The Cheesecake Factory

700 Pike St
Seattle, WA 98101

Ivar’s Fish Bar – Seattle

My friends and i took a one day trip down to the US and we did a bit of the usual sightseeing in Seattle.  After checking out Pike Market we walked down the the waterfront and had lunch at Ivar’s Fish Bar.

Eating at Ivar’s is always such an heart-pounding experience for me because if I sit outside to enjoy the pretty seaview, my food and I would get attacked by seagulls and their poop. This time, my friends chose to sit inside the “shack” but it was really smelly!

I guess I haven’t been to Ivar’s for a long time because now on the menus, they have the calories written next to the prices!

I decided to have the chowder with the least amount of calories (300+), so I had the Red Clam Chowder… i didn’t like the tomato-y taste and the lack of cream!

my friends had the white clam chowder which was double in calories! I don’t know if I want to waste 600+ calories on a cup of “soup” but it’s sooo tasty!


Ivar’s Fish Bar

Pier 54
(between Madison St & Spring St)
Seattle, WA 98104